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The Next Mayor of Los Angeles Might Be a Conservative

Posted on Wednesday, September 7, 2022
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by Andrew Abbott
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40 Comments
Los Angeles

AMAC Exclusive – By Andrew Abbott

In Los Angeles, billionaire real estate developer Rick Caruso is locked in a heated battle with Democrat Rep. Karen Bass for control of the mayor’s office in America’s second largest city. Though both are nominally running as Democrats, Caruso – who was a registered Republican until 2019 – represents the clear conservative alternative to Bass, and has remained within striking distance heading into the final weeks of the campaign.

Caruso shocked the political world earlier this year when polls initially showed him tied with odds-on favorite Bass to succeed incumbent mayor Eric Garcetti, who is term-limited. In the final results from the nonpartisan primary on June 7, Bass ended with a comfortable 43%-36% victory over Caruso, but failed to cross the 50% threshold, sending the race to a runoff between the two on November 8. Since then, both candidates have been working tirelessly to earn the votes garnered by the other 10 candidates on the ballot in June.

Caruso, a lifelong Los Angeles resident, has led a remarkably successful career in real estate following his graduation from the University of Southern California and Pepperdine Law School. His first stint in public service came at just 26 years old when former Mayor Tom Bradley tapped him to serve as the commissioner for the LA Department of Water and Power. 16 years later, Mayor James Hahn appointed Caruso to the LA Board of Police Commissioners, where he was eventually elected president.

Bass has led a long career in politics, beginning with her election to the California State Assembly in 2004. In 2010, Bass was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for her LA-based district and has held the post ever since. Even before her time in politics, Bass built a name for herself as an unabashed radical leftist, going so far as to volunteer on multiple occasions to serve Fidel Castro in Cuba. She’s also garnered a reputation as one of the most far-left members of the House. In 2017, for example, she eulogized a Communist Party leader on the floor of Congress. GovTrack ranks her in the top 30 most liberal U.S. House members.

Unsurprisingly, Bass has earned the endorsement of both Vice President Kamala Harris and President Joe Biden – who reportedly also considered her for VP. Caruso, meanwhile, has picked up the support of a number of Hollywood A-listers like reality TV star Kim Kardashian, rapper Snoop Dogg, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck, Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos, and actress Gwyneth Paltrow.

While Bass has generally endorsed Garcetti’s policies, billing herself as more or less an extension of his administration, Caruso has argued that it’s time for a new direction. His campaign has centered on tackling LA’s homelessness crisis, crime, and rampant government corruption – which consistently poll as top issues for voters.

Crime in particular is a growing concern for LA residents. In the first half of 2022 the city has seen its highest number of homicides in 15 years. Dozens of stores have closed in various parts of the city due to repeated break-ins and looting. Total violent crime in the city is up more than 15%, while arrests are down 15% – due in no small part to Garcetti’s efforts to gut police departments.

Since the primary, Caruso has trailed Bass by between 8 and 10 points, yet polling has been limited in the race. The simple fact that someone like Caruso is even running competitively in Los Angeles is itself a sign that residents may be ready for a change.

Other races elsewhere in the Golden State have also indicated that California residents are growing weary of the state’s left-wing governance. In San Francisco, voters successfully recalled far-left District Attorney Chesa Boudin earlier this year. Though a similar recall effort against LA District Attorney George Gascon fell just short of making it to the ballot last month, it still earned more signatures than another recall effort last year, suggesting growing voter dissatisfaction with the left’s criminal justice “reform” agenda.

Even if Caruso doesn’t emerge on top in November, his relative success may still indicate a broader shift in what has for decades been a reliable bastion of liberalism. With a wave of Latino and Asian immigrants in the 90s, many Democrats believed they had secured California for good. But now, with more minority voters growing disillusioned with Democrat leadership and outraged at the disastrous results of liberal policies, and a consistent conservative base in rural areas, it may not be unthinkable that California could soon be in play for Republicans again.

Andrew Abbott is the pen name of a writer and public affairs consultant with over a decade of experience in DC at the intersection of politics and culture.

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Tom
Tom
1 year ago

Just imagine what a conservative could do with LA.Great future with right leaders.

PaulE
PaulE
1 year ago

While it is nice to think that some or even most Democrat voters will vote for a Republican in any of the major Democrat run and controlled cities and states in the nation because of the total mess Democrat policies have produced to date, the sad reality shows otherwise. The vast majority of Democrat voters continue to ignore and even excuse the mess Democrat policies have made of their cities and states. The high crime, the disastrous job killing and business killing taxes, the ludicrous regulations upon regulations for the simple sake of simply exerting more and more control over all aspects of day-to-day life is all forgotten when it comes down to who to vote for. The overwhelming majority of Democrats in Democrat run and controlled cities continue to vote for a Democrat. Until these voters experience enough personal pain that it makes it impossible for them to ignore the reality that has been in front of their faces for so many years, nothing will change.

I don’t doubt the Republican running for office is the better choice. He obviously seems better than the Democrat alternative. However, I doubt the ability of the majority of Democrat voters in the city to make an intelligent, rational decision based on which candidate would be the better choice. Most Democrats simply don’t make decisions that way. They choose politicians by “how they feel”, “who they think they would like to have a beer with”, and “who checks off all the right boxes in terms of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation and how “progressive” they are”. Not based on who would implement the right set of policies to turn around their city.

Hdrydr
Hdrydr
1 year ago

Don’t count on it. There’s still a little matter of ELECTION FRAUD. Do you think that the democraps will let one of their “gem” cities go to a conservative? The cheating will be EPIC.

Grace
Grace
1 year ago

Democrats love to complain about their problems with taxes, homeless, droughts and fires. They bath in the sympathy. However, don’t even think they will ever vote a Republican or a conservative to save any of their deteriorating cities. They can’t, They are wired different than the rest of us and the wiring is completely screwed up. Smart decent guys like Elders and Caruso waste their time and money on these idiots.

pkv
pkv
1 year ago

LA is the Last place on earth that they will ever admit the Communism doesn’t work. Anything that even resembles a conservative in LA gets a reaction from the citizens of this city like showing Dracula the Cross.

John M
John M
1 year ago

California will be in play for Republicans when pigs sprout wings and learn to fly. It is a sad commentary on the current state of affairs when a “not so far left” Democrat is deemed to be “conservative.” Caruso is fr from conservative. More like “left wing light”.

Old Silk
Old Silk
1 year ago

California fixes the ballgame and calls the winners ahead of time.

Bob
Bob
1 year ago

California needs a COMPLETE change in most big cities and the Governorship! The State is losing population and is bleeding money!

Patriot Bill
Patriot Bill
1 year ago

In your dreams. He will lose by ~2% as all the elections are fixed. Mark my words

Art
Art
1 year ago

ABSOLUTELY LOVED THE TERM “MIGHT BE”. WHAT A DEFINITE “MAYBE.” WISHFUL THINKING. DRUGS,UNHOUSED FOLKS,NOT ENOUGH ELECTRICITY,TAXES OUT THE WAZOO, NO PETROLEUM POWERED VEHICLES, AND WHATEVER YOU WANT TO ADD TO THE LIST INCLUDING SOROS BACKED DAs. THE BEAT GOES ON IN PARTS OF THE SUNSHINE STATE.

Nick
Nick
1 year ago

The reason L.A. is great is because none of you live there.

anna hubert
anna hubert
1 year ago

Californians must be suffering from permanent sunstroke

Bob Olden
Bob Olden
1 year ago

When I look at previous election results in Democrat run cities that are falling apart, I think, “either these people are incredibly stupid or the vote counters are incredibly corrupted”. I suppose it is some of both. But there are less and less stupid ones when they are victims of crime or their neighborhoods are infested with the homeless!

Kay
Kay
1 year ago

Why did Caruso change his registration? Doubt that he can be trusted

Philip Hammersley
Philip Hammersley
1 year ago

Bass is just as socialist as The Squad. She’s not fit to lead a garden party, let alone a large city! But she checks off TWO of the woke boxes!

Morbious
Morbious
1 year ago

This is like the poor little girl who wants a pony for Christmas. We’re not kids and there is no pony coming. The problem with feel good articles is that they lead to disappointment and apathy when they dont pan out. California not only has millions on welfare waiting for a bump in their dole, it also features the most indoctrinated voter base in the country along with nyc. Ten points may as well be thirty. We saw what happened to the terminator. He tried a few ‘common sense’ fiscal reforms and got the boot. Larry elder crashed and burned. Even if caruso squeaked in he will not be able to change things in any substantial way. The deadbeats and lefty elites wont allow it.

mark
mark
1 year ago

i have said it before and will again the only good thing that could happen to cali. would be for it to break off and fall into he ocean ,,, just think of the great new west coast we would have ,,,

Denise
Denise
1 year ago

Not to long ago I was one who “hated” California. BUT: I spent my formative years there in the 50’s. It was safe, clean, indeed we had fires occasionally but not like in the last few years. It was well managed, our forests were managed, unlike the stupid self proclaimed “environmentalists”…basically moron hippies who smoke pot and have decided they know better than actual trained forest rangers. You didn’t have the kind of sick twisted insanity that has plagued it for years. And it wasn’t run by self serving demorats and rinos who care less as long as their multi-million dollar mansions surrounded by “security walls” (but not the border!) are secure and patrolled. To hell with the people who have lived and worked there for decades and can’t afford to leave homes they can’t sell.
The state itself has been trampled into the morass by self serving treasonous ego maniacs who drool at the destruction of the entire nation, not just California. California hasn’t been the Golden State since Reagan was in office.
California was once the Golden State and it lived up to it’s reputation….the self serving traitors have destroyed everything that was beautiful about it. Once upon a time I loved that state, it was the only home I’d had for 11 years in a row. We moved around a lot for my dad’s job as an aircraft engineer, it hurt to leave it.


Ed J
Ed J
1 year ago

Caruso would be a Breath of Fresh Air in our Golden State. But, then again, with Bass we would end up with just another Fart in a Spacesuit!

JudyG46
JudyG46
1 year ago

They just want to continue in their own debaucherous, sinful lifestyles and don’t want anyone shining light on those ways. That’s why they endorse endorse a non- conservative. He’ll just condone anything “non-conservative”. That’s why the democrats have such a large base of voters; they mostly all live in darkness to one degree or another and are threatened by any light that would expose them!

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
1 year ago

Hope so in the Reagen Trump tradition

MOcountry
MOcountry
1 year ago

I would bet almost any amount of money that LA will not go Republican. The majority may hate what the left has done to the state, but they are much too ignorant to know it was the left that caused it. And as long as they keep sucking up the lies and trickery of the dimocRATS, it will only get worse!

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